Gingrich: I Can Support Santorum, Talk of Shared Ticket to Stop Romney

Sunday, 01 Apr 2012 06:49 PM

By Newsmax Wires

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There is growing talk that if former House Speaker Newt Gingrich drops out of the race and "suspends" his campaign, he may throw his support behind Rick Santorum in an effort to deny Mitt Romney the GOP nomination.

And, for the moment, Gingrich is not yielding to the slew of establishment endorsements for Mitt Romney.

Gingrich told CBS News' "Face the Nation" Sunday that Romney has no lock on the nomination and the math doesn't show him getting the 1,144 delegates easily to clinch the nomination.

A leading Gingrich campaign official also suggested this weekend that their camp may work with Santorum to stop Romney from getting the nomination as the former House speaker made clear he could back either Santorum or Romney if they were to win the nomination.

"If Rick Santorum becomes the nominee, I'll help him," Gingrich said. "We are all committed to defeating Barack Obama. We think his re-election would be a disaster for the country."

Santorum offered a similar sentiment about Romney's difficulty in getting the required delegates.

On Sunday's "Meet the Press," Santorum scoffed at the idea that Romney has the nomination.

"Right now, he's not there," he said, adding, "He's not even close to it."

This past weekend, Gingrich's Wisconsin state campaign director, Robert Lorge, suggested that Gingrich and Santorum may work together to gain control of the Republican convention.

"Lorge is of the school of thought that Romney won’t make the cut, and moving forward, there will be a highly contested battle for delegates," Fox News reported.

“Newt’s the only candidate that realizes this battlefield is almost done, but the coming battlefield is the convention,” Lorge said. “Like all true leaders, he’s the first one on to that battlefield. He’s going to be focusing on contacting those delegates, particularly the soft delegates, but all the delegates even the alternates.”

Lorge indicated in a conference call this past week that there is a "possibility of consolidating Santorum and Gingrich delegates at the Republican National Convention in order to overcome Romney’s delegate math."

“I imagine there’s going to be a lot of negotiation and compromising between the pro-Newt Gingrich and the pro-Rick Santorum delegates,” he said. “You may have a Newt Gingrich-Rick Santorum ticket. You may have a Rick Santorum-Newt Gingrich ticket. Nobody knows how that ticket’s going to work out. But I imagine it’ll end up being something like that.”

While Romney holds a lead over the combined delegate count of Santorum and Gingrich, political pundits note that the former Mass. governor will still have to win almost every primary going forward to secure the nomination. If he loses to Santorum in states like Pennsylvania and Texas, the GOP convention set for this August in Tampa may end up being contested.




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